Artisan Food With A Story
Food tastes better when it has a story
Google search loading Loading search bar...
 
Log on    Log on
Newsletter

The Food Movement, Rising - an excerpt from Michael Pollan's essay

The-Food-Movement-Rising---an-excerpt-from-Michael-Pollans-essay

Read the full essay by Michael Pollan (author of 'The omnivore's dilemma') here http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2010/jun/10/food-movement-rising/?pagination=false

What is attracting so many people to the [food] movement today (and young people in particular) is a much less conventional kind of politics, one that is about something more than food. The food movement is also about community, identity, pleasure, and, most notably, about carving out a new social and economic space removed from the influence of big corporations on the one side and government on the other. As the Diggers used to say during their San Francisco be-ins during the 1960s, food can serve as “an edible dynamic”—a means to a political end that is only nominally about food itself.

One can get a taste of this social space simply by hanging around a farmers’ market, an activity that a great many people enjoy today regardless of whether they’re in the market for a bunch of carrots or a head of lettuce. Farmers’ markets are thriving, more than five thousand strong, and there is a lot more going on in them than the exchange of money for food. Someone is collecting signatures on a petition. Someone else is playing music. Children are everywhere, sampling fresh produce, talking to farmers. Friends and acquaintances stop to chat. One sociologist calculated that people have ten times as many conversations at the farmers’ market than they do in the supermarket. Socially as well as sensually, the farmers’ market offers a remarkably rich and appealing environment. Someone buying food here may be acting not just as a consumer but also as a neighbor, a citizen, a parent, a cook. In many cities and towns, farmers’ markets have taken on (and not for the first time) the function of a lively new public square.

Though seldom articulated as such, the attempt to redefine, or escape, the traditional role of consumer has become an important aspiration of the food movement. In various ways it seeks to put the relationship between consumers and producers on a new, more neighborly footing, enriching the kinds of information exchanged in the transaction, and encouraging us to regard our food dollars as “votes” for a different kind of agriculture and, by implication, economy. The modern marketplace would have us decide what to buy strictly on the basis of price and self-interest; the food movement implicitly proposes that we enlarge our understanding of both those terms, suggesting that not just “good value” but ethical and political values should inform our buying decisions, and that we’ll get more satisfaction from our eating when they do.

That satisfaction helps to explain why many in the movement don’t greet the spectacle of large corporations adopting its goals, as some of them have begun to do, with unalloyed enthusiasm. Already Wal-Mart sells organic and local food, but this doesn’t greatly warm the hearts of food movement activists. One important impetus for the movement, or at least its locavore wing—those who are committed to eating as much locally produced food as possible—is the desire to get “beyond the barcode”—to create new economic and social structures outside of the mainstream consumer economy. Though not always articulated in these terms, the local food movement wants to decentralize the global economy, if not secede from it altogether, which is why in some communities, such as Great Barrington, Massachusetts, local currencies (the “BerkShare”) have popped up.

In fact it’s hard to say which comes first: the desire to promote local agriculture or the desire to promote local economies more generally by cutting ties, to whatever degree possible, to the national economic grid.4 This is at bottom a communitarian impulse, and it is one that is drawing support from the right as well as the left. Though the food movement has deep roots in the counterculture of the 1960s, its critique of corporate food and federal farm subsidies, as well as its emphasis on building community around food, has won it friends on the right. In his 2006 book Crunchy Cons, Rod Dreher identifies a strain of libertarian conservatism, often evangelical, that regards fast food as anathema to family values, and has seized on local food as a kind of culinary counterpart to home schooling.

It makes sense that food and farming should become a locus of attention for Americans disenchanted with consumer capitalism. Food is the place in daily life where corporatization can be most vividly felt: think about the homogenization of taste and experience represented by fast food. By the same token, food offers us one of the shortest, most appealing paths out of the corporate labyrinth, and into the sheer diversity of local flavors, varieties, and characters on offer at the farmers’ market.

Put another way, the food movement has set out to foster new forms of civil society. But instead of proposing that space as a counterweight to an overbearing state, as is usually the case, the food movement poses it against the dominance of corporations and their tendency to insinuate themselves into any aspect of our lives from which they can profit. As Wendell Berry writes, the corporations

will grow, deliver, and cook your food for you and (just like your mother) beg you to eat it. That they do not yet offer to insert it, prechewed, into your mouth is only because they have found no profitable way to do so.

The corporatization of something as basic and intimate as eating is, for many of us today, a good place to draw the line.

[section removed]

Part of the movement’s critique of industrial food is that, with the rise of fast food and the collapse of everyday cooking, it has damaged family life and community by undermining the institution of the shared meal. Sad as it may be to bowl alone, eating alone can be sadder still, not least because it is eroding the civility on which our political culture depends.

That is the argument made by Janet Flammang, a political scientist, in a provocative new book called The Taste for Civilization: Food, Politics, and Civil Society. “Significant social and political costs have resulted from fast food and convenience foods,” she writes, “grazing and snacking instead of sitting down for leisurely meals, watching television during mealtimes instead of conversing”—40 percent of Americans watch television during meals—”viewing food as fuel rather than sustenance, discarding family recipes and foodways, and denying that eating has social and political dimensions.” The cultural contradictions of capitalism—its tendency to undermine the stabilizing social forms it depends on—are on vivid display at the modern American dinner table.

In a challenge to second-wave feminists who urged women to get out of the kitchen, Flammang suggests that by denigrating “foodwork”—everything involved in putting meals on the family table—we have unthinkingly wrecked one of the nurseries of democracy: the family meal. It is at “the temporary democracy of the table” that children learn the art of conversation and acquire the habits of civility—sharing, listening, taking turns, navigating differences, arguing without offending—and it is these habits that are lost when we eat alone and on the run. “Civility is not needed when one is by oneself.”5

These arguments resonated during the Senate debate over health care reform, when The New York Times reported that the private Senate dining room, where senators of both parties used to break bread together, stood empty. Flammang attributes some of the loss of civility in Washington to the aftermatch of the 1994 Republican Revolution, when Newt Gingrich, the new Speaker of the House, urged his freshman legislators not to move their families to Washington. Members now returned to their districts every weekend, sacrificing opportunities for socializing across party lines and, in the process, the “reservoirs of good will replenished at dinner parties.” It is much harder to vilify someone with whom you have shared a meal.

[section removed]

At the very least this is a debate worth having, and it begins by taking food issues much more seriously than we have taken them. Flammang suggests that the invisibility of these issues until recently owes to the identification of food work with women and the (related) fact that eating, by its very nature, falls on the wrong side of the mind–body dualism. “Food is apprehended through the senses of touch, smell and taste,” she points out,

which rank lower on the hierarchy of senses than sight and hearing, which are typically thought to give rise to knowledge. In most of philosophy, religion, and literature, food is associated with body, animal, female, and appetite—things civilized men have sought to overcome with reason and knowledge.

Much to our loss. But food is invisible no longer and, in light of the mounting costs we’ve incurred by ignoring it, it is likely to demand much more of our attention in the future, as eaters, parents, and citizens. It is only a matter of time before politicians seize on the power of the food issue, which besides being increasingly urgent is also almost primal, indeed is in some deep sense proto- political. For where do all politics begin if not in the high chair?—at that fateful moment when mother, or father, raises a spoonful of food to the lips of the baby who clamps shut her mouth, shakes her head no, and for the very first time in life awakens to and asserts her sovereign power.


Your comments/feedback

Either reply to a comment or use the 'Add a new comment' button below to make a comment.

To access the full functionality (such as adding images to your comments and receiving optional alerts) please
log on now if you already have an account or register here if you are new.


baba chale the great spell caster

by tracey mephis  |   20 November 2017 03:40 PM   |   0 replies

how DR CHALE brought back my husband.First I want to thank you for the help and precious advices you gave me during the whole process. You can’t imagine how your emails helped me to stay calm and brought back my fiance positively. The other casters I hired before you were Deceiving me and I’m sure it explains why their spells didn’t worked. It all seemed so easy with you, even that terrible wait I’ve faced has been profitable as I followed your suggestions and did my meditations every night. Meanwhile, I have to say that I’m impressed by the outcome of the spell.cause my two children are very happy that their dad are back, To tell you the truth, I wasn’t expecting such spectacular results.thanks once again for the work well done, I will definitely come back to you if I ever need another spell: chalesolution@yahoo.com

After being in relationship with Wilson for seven years

by jessica wnye  |   02 April 2017 05:26 AM   |   0 replies

After being in relationship with Wilson for seven years,he broke up with me, I did everything possible to bring him back but all was in vain, I wanted him back so much because of the love I have for him, I begged him with everything, I made promises but he refused. I explained my problem to someone online and she suggested that I should contact a spell caster that could help me cast a spell to bring him back but I am the type that don't believed in spell, I had no choice than to try it, I meant a spell caster called Dr Zuma zuk and I email him, and he told me there was no problem that everything will be okay before three days, that my ex will return to me before three days, he cast the spell and surprisingly in the second day, it was around 4pm. My ex called me, I was so surprised, I answered the call and all he said was that he was so sorry for everything that happened, that he wanted me to return to him, that he loves me so much. I was so happy and went to him, that was how we started living together happily again. Since then, I have made promise that anybody I know that have a relationship problem, I would be of help to such person by referring him or her to the only real and powerful spell caster who helped me with my own problem and who is different from all the fake ones out there. Anybody could need the help of the spell caster, his email: spiritualherbalisthealing@gmail.com or call him +2349055637784 you can email him if you need his assistance in your relationship or anything. CONTACT HIM NOW FOR SOLUTION TO ALL YOUR PROBLEMS'

DOCTOR ODION. YOU ARE GOD SENT TO HELP PEOPLE LIFE, I PRAY YOU WILL NOT DIE BEFORE YOUR TIME.

by ESTHER PEREZ  |   20 March 2017 07:56 PM   |   0 replies

DOCTOR ODION. YOU ARE GOD SENT TO HELP PEOPLE LIFE, I PRAY YOU WILL NOT DIE BEFORE YOUR TIME.

This is real take it serious, who will believe that a herb can cure herpes, i never believe that this will work, i have spend a lot getting drugs from the hospital to keep me healthy, it got to a time that i was waiting for is death to come because i was broke, one day i hard about this great man called Dr ODION who is well know for Herpes, HIV, and Cancer cure, i decided to email him I didn't believe him that much, I just wanted to give him a try, he replied my mail and Needed some Information about me, then I sent them to him, he prepared a herbal medicine (CURE) and sent it through Online Courier Service for delivery, he gave my details to the Courier Office. they told me that 3-5 days I will receive the package and after receiving it, i took the medicine as prescribed by him at the end of the one week, he told me to go to the hospital for a check up, and i went, surprisingly after the test the doctor confirm me Herpes simplex virus negative, i thought it was a joke, i went to other hospital and was also negative, thank you for saving my life, I promise I will always testify of your good works. if you are herpes simplex virus patient, OR you are be helping by someone before i will like to advice you to give this man a try and see what will happen to your life don't worry about the money you have be use contact him and I am sure you will get cured, contact him via: Email: (drodion60@yandex.com) 0R call his number on +2347057623144 OR +2349060503921
THESE ARE THE THINGS DR ODION DOES.
HIV,
CANCER,
ASTHMA,
IMPOTENCE,
LOW SPERM COUNT,
BARENESS/INFERTILITY,
I can’t stop talking about this man called Dr ODION cause he is a God sent to cure humans from different DISEASES with herbal medications, he cured me of GENITAL HERPES, he will also help you. Contact him today and you will have a testimony…Good luck!

DOCTOR ODION. YOU ARE GOD SENT TO HELP PEOPLE LIFE, I PRAY YOU WILL NOT DIE BEFORE YOUR TIME.

by ESTHER PEREZ  |   20 March 2017 07:55 PM   |   0 replies

DOCTOR ODION. YOU ARE GOD SENT TO HELP PEOPLE LIFE, I PRAY YOU WILL NOT DIE BEFORE YOUR TIME.

This is real take it serious, who will believe that a herb can cure herpes, i never believe that this will work, i have spend a lot getting drugs from the hospital to keep me healthy, it got to a time that i was waiting for is death to come because i was broke, one day i hard about this great man called Dr ODION who is well know for Herpes, HIV, and Cancer cure, i decided to email him I didn't believe him that much, I just wanted to give him a try, he replied my mail and Needed some Information about me, then I sent them to him, he prepared a herbal medicine (CURE) and sent it through Online Courier Service for delivery, he gave my details to the Courier Office. they told me that 3-5 days I will receive the package and after receiving it, i took the medicine as prescribed by him at the end of the one week, he told me to go to the hospital for a check up, and i went, surprisingly after the test the doctor confirm me Herpes simplex virus negative, i thought it was a joke, i went to other hospital and was also negative, thank you for saving my life, I promise I will always testify of your good works. if you are herpes simplex virus patient, OR you are be helping by someone before i will like to advice you to give this man a try and see what will happen to your life don't worry about the money you have be use contact him and I am sure you will get cured, contact him via: Email: (drodion60@yandex.com) 0R call his number on +2347057623144 OR +2349060503921
THESE ARE THE THINGS DR ODION DOES.
HIV,
CANCER,
ASTHMA,
IMPOTENCE,
LOW SPERM COUNT,
BARENESS/INFERTILITY,
I can’t stop talking about this man called Dr ODION cause he is a God sent to cure humans from different DISEASES with herbal medications, he cured me of GENITAL HERPES, he will also help you. Contact him today and you will have a testimony…Good luck!

HOW I WIN MY HUSBAND BACK

by Sandra Smith  |   03 June 2016 01:53 AM   |   0 replies

HOW I WIN MY HUSBAND BACK.Am Sandra Smith.from UK. I never believed in love spells or magic until i met this spell caster once when i went to Africa in February this year on a business summit. I meant a man who’s name is Dr.ATIAFO he is really powerful and could help cast spells to bring back one’s gone, lost, misbehaving lover and magic money spell or spell for a good job or luck spell .I’m now happy & a living testimony cos the man i had wanted to marry left me 3 weeks before our wedding and my life was upside down cos our relationship has been on for 3years. I really loved him, but his mother was against us and he had no good paying job. So when i met this spell caster, i told him what happened and explained the situation of things to him. At first i was undecided, skeptical and doubtful, but i just gave it a try. And in 7 days when i returned to Canada, my boyfriend (now husband) called me by himself and came to me apologizing that everything had been settled with his mom and family and he got a new job interview so we should get married. I didn’t believe it cos the spell caster only asked for my name and my boyfriends name and all i wanted him to do. Well we are happily married now and we are expecting our little kid, and my husband also got the new job and our lives became much better. His email is. atitafospelltemple@yahoo.com .OR YOU CAN ALSO ADD HIM UP ON WHATSAPP USING THIS MOBILE NUMBER+2347067607073..

CONTACT HIM NOW FOR SOLUTION TO ALL YOUR PROBLEMS

by jessica wnye  |   15 March 2016 02:45 PM   |   0 replies

'After being in relationship with Wilson for seven years,he broke up with me, I did everything possible to bring him back but all was in vain, I wanted him back so much because of the love I have for him, I begged him with everything, I made promises but he refused. I explained my problem to someone online and she suggested that I should contact a spell caster that could help me cast a spell to bring him back but I am the type that don't believed in spell, I had no choice than to try it, I meant a spell caster called Dr Zuma zuk and I email him, and he told me there was no problem that everything will be okay before three days, that my ex will return to me before three days, he cast the spell and surprisingly in the second day, it was around 4pm. My ex called me, I was so surprised, I answered the call and all he said was that he was so sorry for everything that happened, that he wanted me to return to him, that he loves me so much. I was so happy and went to him, that was how we started living together happily again. Since then, I have made promise that anybody I know that have a relationship problem, I would be of help to such person by referring him or her to the only real and powerful spell caster who helped me with my own problem and who is different from all the fake ones out there. Anybody could need the help of the spell caster, his email: spiritualherbalisthealers@gmail.com you can email him if you need his assistance in your relationship or anything. CONTACT HIM NOW FOR SOLUTION TO ALL YOUR PROBLEMS'

© 2018 FOOD WITH A STORY SOUTH AFRICA  |  Web design by Redweb.co.nz